Don’t lump African consumers in one market, Nielsen warns
Nielsen was another organisation to present results of their research at the on-going 16th annual Pamro conference, taking place in Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. Michael Bratt takes a look at their research and what it can tell media players and advertisers about the African market and consumers who play in it.
The main message of Nielsen’s presentation was that even though African people are part of the same continent they cannot all be lumped together. Africa has a diverse set of consumers across the spectrum and their priorities differ in most cases.
But there are some factors which are consistent across the different markets. Nielsen says what is important is understanding what matters most to consumers. Of the respondents that Nielsen spoke to 80 per cent prioritise spending time with family, 78 per cent value the opinion of women in the household and 77 per cent believe in respect for elders. These were the values that they believe in most. Conversely only 33 per cent prioritise spending time with friends, 36 per cent are the first to try new things, and 39 per cent say friends seek their advice about technology. These elements matter less to them.
Differences also arise depending on geographical location. While 97 per cent of respondents from Botswana prioritise spending time with family, only 65 per cent of Ghanaians believe it. Similarly while only 29 per cent of Ethiopians will buy something they like, even if they did not plan to buy it, 59 per cent of Mozambicans will do it. One factor that is consistent across the continent is that consumer goods are the biggest share of spend “With interest in and ability to spend growing”.
During the presentation Nielsen highlighted the growing market of mobile internet. They said the key for advertisers is the use of “Integrated, cross platform campaigns which are critical, with messaging for the right audience”.